Magical Songwad and LLL

Here in Bangkok, if you love to embrace the beautiful historical buildings, the details of impressive windows, well-designed doors with unique proportions, as well as the colorful combinations of living commercial activities and Thailand’s tuk-tuk, you may opt for Songwad district. Songwad district is the charming riverfront commercial and warehouse area in Samphantawong. If you are already planning to eat out at Bangkok’s China Town (Yaowarat), Songwad is only a stone’s throw away from Yaowarat by walking. The high-value buildings are mostly deteriorated. You may find these European style buildings in Songwad as a scruffy old place, but Songwad has been affectionately appreciated by many people (I think) including myself. It would be nice if the proper maintenance efforts could be in place one day before its charm is gone. These buildings are beautiful and the details of the building are very charming. It would be great having classic bistro cafes, art galleries, mini museums, open space for communities or chic B&Bs at Songwad. Let’s hope for the best.

I went to Songwad and LLL with my friend, Ju (a classmate from KMITL) to take photos and test our cameras. We studied Interior Architecture together. I think there is a contagious disease in this 5-year course from KMITL as most of us are mad about old buildings, architecture, travelling and of course taking photos. Enjoy eating is not mentioned here as it is already instilled in our instinct.

You never know what the future holds. It can be applied here too as nothing is certain. Right now, Songwad area is also having a little flood like most area nearby The Chao Phraya river in Bangkok. Other upcountry provinces such as Ayutthaya, Lopburi, Nakornsawan, and Pathumthani are having the serious flood crisis. Thailand is now facing its worst flood in 50 years. To help the flood victims, check out Thai Red Cross’s website. Fighto Thailand!

After strolling around Songwad, we went through the area of Wat Pathumkongka which is an old temple established since the Ayutthaya period. Don’t panic! My friend’s interior design work at Loy La Long Hotel is located behind Wat Pathumkongka (previously called as Wat Sampeng). You may not imagine that there is a chic B&B hidden behind a temple. You just have to walk through Wat Pathumkongka first and then you will find a hidden gem. Its name, “Loy La Long” is so cute and meaningful. I guess Loy La Long refers to its floating nature above the Chao Phraya river. From its website, the DNA behind this place should be “Let it be, Let it go, Let it flow”. Its natural concept of Loy La Long is coincident with my thinking towards the current Thailand flood 2011 situation. Yes, Let it be, Let it go, Let it flow.

Loy La Long has its own charm which is Bangkok’s riverfront life style. It is very cozy as a small renovated house with only 7 rooms (with 7 different colors). You can choose any room according to your mood and feel. Your favorite room maybe a dormitory room if you visit Bangkok as a group of friends or as a small family. It is not 5-star establishment, but I am sure you will experience a real charming riverfront life in Bangkok. There is also a common area upstairs where guests can actually share their friendly time if they want to. A Balcony Views To Die For! Drinking beer and getting drunk while enjoying Bangkok’s sunset by the river maybe your ideal choice of staying here. Having breakfast by the river is also charming, I think. From here, you can go anywhere easily by walking or by tuk-tuk. If you like to visit Bangkok’s 24-hr Flower Market (Pak Klong Talad) , it is not so far away. Check out its current updates and the water levels on LLL’s facebook.

If you’d like to feel the old charm of Bangkok’s riverfront life style, Loy La Long is for you. Its location was once featured in the famous Thai film in 2009, called “Bangkok Traffic Love story”. Those who watched this Thai movie may like to see a magic here again. Yes, it is a stunning view of The Chao Phraya river.

We saw many friendly dogs inside the vicinity of Wat Pathumkongka which is a normal scene in most Thai temples. He/or she is the one of Songwad community members who responded us with wonder eyes.

I like everything about Songwad, except the fact that the old cremation building at Wat Pathumkongka ( the four photos as below ) was demolished a while ago. Thai history from Ayutthaya era was destroyed.

You may have more parking spaces with no trace of an old glory. It is after all representing a temple with a history. What is so wrong with a beautiful cremation building? I appreciate its color combination and its proportion. At present, you rarely find such a piece of art from Ayutthaya period at a normal newly built temple. I understand that the cremation building was not in use. A cremation cafe & spa or a cremation gallery may not be a great idea, but I don’t think we should destroy this historical building anyway. This post is dedicated to my final farewell of this cremation building. We are facing the era of having nothing left to tell the world or at least to remind ourselves of who we are. Cremation building may not be a fondest destination, but it is just a part of Thai culture.

We opt for more parking slots instead of preserving old building.


Let it be, Let it go, Let it flow.

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